He managed to build fire - there were logs in the kitchen as
well as in the smithy - and the two of them enjoyed the warm waves
falling on their bodies. The wind outside the cave was getting
stronger and sang its endless song of cold and infinity.
2. The Shrine
Nlaminer sharpened the knife - the only weapon he had found in
the outer buildings. Rhissa refused to use any weapon, and just
carved the branch they had found into a sort of staff. The wood was
still alive and could be brought to life again, explained she, but in
this accursed place only spells could help it to survive. So while
Nlaminer annoyed the silence with monotonous gnashes of steel
against whetstone, Rhissa chanted over the newly carved staff and
removed the last dead stripes of the bark.
After an hour they managed to make as decent weapons as the
situation allowed and went out hunting. They separated - nothing
showed any danger around - and began to search for food. Rhissa under
water, Nlaminer went around the isle, right by the cliff.
The water was still warm and Rhissa after several minutes returned
with her prey - several dozen fishes. Nlaminer returned only after
an hour and reported there were nothing but gulls' eggs.
Instead, he discovered another hidden passage.
While he was frying his fish he told Rhissa about that.
"The entrance is well hidden and the door just slides to the
left," he began. "It was inscribed with Andrynx rune, but there were
no footprints in the cave, as if it had been abandoned for centuries."
Rhissa opened her eyes wider and a spark shone in them. She
didn't find the hidden passage, despite she walked thrice around the
isle. Nlaminer had a definite gift of tracking.
"Wonderful," she said after Nlaminer finished his story. "You
help us a lot, my friend, for this is the only way to learn more. I
wouldn't like to tell that before, but it seems something prevents me
from talking to Naata."
Nlaminer was astonished beyond measure. "How long is it so ?"
"After we had our visions there, before that door."
"And you think the thing that sent all of this hides somewhere
behind the door ?"
Rhissa shook her head. "No, that place is quite safe. Well, safer
than you suppose. It's a crypt, very ancient crypt, built centuries
before the lighthouse was constructed."
Nlaminer wanted to ask how she knew such things, but there was
probably no need now. The certainty in Rhissa's voice was strong, and
almost never made suggestions taken out of nowhere.
Nlaminer finished his meal and examined their water can.
"We have water for just a day, no more," he warned. "We should
find some source somewhere."
"I wouldn't drink the water inside the lighthouse," remarked
Rhissa. "Let's visit that Andrynx place first. If there is some
source of fresh water, it's underground."
They hid the entrance to their new home as best they could and
Another storm was building up.
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